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Theory of Plate Tectonics

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Presentation on theme: "Theory of Plate Tectonics"— Presentation transcript:


2 Theory of Plate Tectonics
Plate Boundaries Causes of Plate Tectonics

3 Plate Tectonics

4 What is Plate Tectonics
The Earth’s crust and upper mantle are broken into sections called plates Plates move around on top of the mantle like rafts


6 What is the Lithosphere?
The crust and part of the upper mantle = lithosphere 100 km thick Less dense than the material below it so it “floats”

7 What is the Asthenoshere?
The plastic layer below the lithosphere = asthenosphere The plates of the lithosphere float on the asthenosphere


9 2 Types of Plates Ocean plates - plates below the oceans Continental plates - plates below the continents

10 Questions... What is the theory of plate tectonics?
What is the lithosphere? What is the asthenosphere? What is the connection between the two? What are the two types of plates?

11 Plate Boundaries

12 Divergent Boundaries Boundary between two plates that are moving apart or rifting   RIFTING causes SEAFLOOR SPREADING

13 Features of Divergent Boundaries
Mid-ocean ridges rift valleys fissure volcanoes




17 Convergent Boundaries
Boundaries between two plates that are colliding   There are 3 types…

18 Type 1 Ocean plate colliding with a less dense continental plate
Subduction Zone: where the less dense plate slides under the more dense plate VOLCANOES occur at subduction zones


20 Andes Mountains, South America

21 Type 2 Ocean plate colliding with another ocean plate
The less dense plate slides under the more dense plate creating a subduction zone called a TRENCH


23 Aleutian Islands, Alaska

24 Type 3 A continental plate colliding with another continental plate
Have Collision Zones: a place where folded and thrust faulted mountains form.



27 Transform Fault Boundaries
Boundary between two plates that are sliding past each other EARTHQUAKES along faults


29 San Andreas Fault, CA

30 Questions... What are the three types of boundaries?
What direction do plates go for each? Which boundary has a subduction zone…what occurs at a subduction zone?

31 Causes of Plate Tectonics

32 Convection Currents Hot magma in the Earth moves toward the surface, cools, then sinks again. Creates convection currents beneath the plates that cause the plates to move.


34 Questions... What causes plates to move?
How is a convection current formed?

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